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Climate Adaptation Summit 2021

Filed under: — rasmus @ 31 January 2021

The first ever Climate Adaptation Summit (#adaptationsummit) that I have heard about took place last week, on January 25-26. I think such a summit was a step in the right direction. It was adapted to the Covid-19 situation and therefore an online virtual summit streamed on YouTube

I watched a few of the streamed sessions, and it struck me that climate change adaptation seems to be a fairly new concept to many leaders. It were sometimes mix-ups with mitigation during the high-level talks. Mitigation and adaptation are both important and sometimes they overlap, so mix-ups are understandable. 

One important point addressed during the summit was of course financing climate change adaptation, which is promising. Financing is clearly needed for climate change adaptation. To ensure progress and avoid lofty visions without results on the ground, there may also be a need for tangible results and to show examples and demonstrations. One specific type discussed at the summit was “Early warning systems” which play an important role.

But it was not crystal clear what was meant by the concept “early warning systems”. My interpretation is that it involves something on par with weather forecasts which would imply that they are more about weather than climate. This is of course important too. Probably the first priority in many places. 

But early warning systems, the way I understand them, don’t provide information about climate risks on longer timescales. Weather and climate – short and long timescales – are of course connected but nevertheless different (“climate” can be viewed as weather statistics). Other examples of climate adaptation can be found in a recent Eos article on food security in Africa. I think it is important to mention maladaptation and avoid long-term problems connected to short-term fixes. Resilience is a keyword. 

As with many other summits, I felt that the scientists’ voice was largely missing. There seems to be a gap between high-level politics and science. I think we need a better dialogue between the leaders and climate scientists partly to help distinguish between different and difficult concepts. But the main reason is that we need to know what we must adapt to. We need to know the situation: the state of the climate and how it is changing. This knowledge is not readily downloadable from the Internet.

There are key questions that should involve scientists: What is needed for proper climate change adaptation? And what are the challenges in terms of meeting our objectives? What do we know about future risks? In addition, biodiversity, nature conservation, cultural, social and economic aspects are important. 

Data is crucial, but is often unavailable because of lack of sharing and lack of openness. Often due to lacking finance. Information about the regional climate change must be distilled from large volumes of data, and we need to ask what information is useful and how it can be used in the best possible way.

The required analysis is often carried out in climate services and often includes downscaling. It involves tools, methods and understanding that are still evolving with regards to these topics. This fact wasn’t explained clearly during the summit in the sessions I watched. I think it would be useful with a presentation of the state of climate science relevant for climate change adaptation at a high level in the summit. Perhaps science should get an equal amount of attention as the NGOs and the businesses. 

Much of the latest research relevant to the climate adaptation summit is coordinated within the World Climate Research Programme (WRCP) which also is setting a new focus on regional information for society (“RifS”). Furthermore, there is considerable scientific experience on adaptation from the Arctic with the fastest climate change on Earth, such as the Adaptive Actions in a Changing Arctic (AACA) report for the Arctic Council. 

Climate adaptation involves many communities and disciplines (e.g. weather forecasting, climate services, regional climate modelling, “distillation“, disaster risk reduction) which I think aren’t well coordinated at the moment. One message from the summit was “Let’s work together” which I think implies a better coordination of the different disciplines and communities.

68 Responses to “Climate Adaptation Summit 2021”

  1. 51
    Piotr says:

    Keith Woollard (49) “ Piotr, You continue to complete misunderstand the issues

    That’s a blanket statement. To prove it you have to be specific. You know, like you tried (35) ;-) :
    ====
    KW (35)” global – no, I didn’t say that
    Piotr(38): quoting KW (31): ” The mistake is to assume the tie between global warming and local rainfall trends

    KW(35) “continental (Australia) no, I didn’t say that either
    Piotr(38): “Crimp’s work [you claimed was “incorrect”] were on Australia‘ s wheat farming (i.e. both East and West)”
    ===
    Sure, it backfired there, but perhaps you have other examples of my “complete misunderstanding”? How about that:
    If Dr Crimp were correct and the technological improvements are masking the drying conditions, then the east coast yields should have improved by more than 27%, and that is simply not the case.

    My response: ” I injured my leg. As a result, my walking speed dropped by 27%. My doctor gave me excellent braces, which stabilized my leg and returned my walking speed to pre-injury level. Keith Woolward, who wasn’t injuried, tries the braces on, and …. disproves my injury by saying: “braces should have increased my walking speed by 27%. and that is simply not the case.”

    Keith Woollard (49) “ Piotr, You continue to […] misquote me “.

    Misquoting is a serious accusation. So even more important to PROVE: post your original text next to my “misquote”, so everybody can see how I CHANGED the meaning of what you said. Put your money where your mouth is.

    KW(49) “I have the utmost respect for farmers and would never suggest they are lazy or morons.

    By their fruits, not their empty declarations, you shall know them: WHAT ELSE have you SUGEESTED, when you dismissed their understanding of their own land, and their need for the changes in agricultural practices they have done to conserve soil moisture, by implying the drying to which they responded was not real:

    – “ it doesn’t take many searches to find papers that completely disagree” [with the reduction in rainfall in Australia’s wheat farming areas]
    and:
    – “ Corrigin has 110 years of records and there is no clear trend [in rainfall]

    And here is a response to your “ utmost respect” from the one Australian farmer we have here:

    “I don’t know where to begin. [Dale then lists problems with your claim and concludes:] I’m not sure which planet you are living on but it does not sound much like mine.” Dale Park(30)

  2. 52
    nigelj says:

    JDS @50,
    “nigelj says many things that make basically no sense ( @48 allegedly).”

    I don’t think so. I said the following which is 99% of the points I made:” It makes sense (to adopt electric cars right now) …because electric cars have other advantages over ICE cars eg no nitrous oxide and other lung irritating emissions, lower maintenance, cheaper to run (in many countries) batteries can be recycled, unlike fossil fuels.” I would have thought this was clear enough and makes sense as a reason to buy them for some people at least. I only plead guilty to writing the comment on expanding electric car production in parallel with renewables badly but the underlying point is fairly obvious, AND you havent falsified that point.

    “I have been to China on four separate occasions and know that they are not going to cut back on their coal fired power plants”.

    Why would anyone here take this big, evidence free claim seriously? You need to understand that your very big, bold statement lacks credibility without details, evidence and proof AND an internet link to back this up. Give me a link to Chinese media with a photo with you standing with Xi Jinping, for example.

    “I deal in facts”.

    Oh wow I guess we should be really humbled. The trouble is your facts don’t demonstrate anything new or useful or not already known to people here. Its all tedious stuff that belongs in the…you can guess the rest. You’ve been there a lot. Seems to be your favourite place.

    “Nigel deals in what ifs”.

    You mean for example like covid is starting to spread around the world, and is very infectious, “what if” it leads to big trouble, so perhaps we should take some precautions? Yes I plead guilty to that sort of thinking (sarc).

  3. 53
    J Doug Swallow says:

    #52 12 Feb 2021 at 9:14 PM nigelj says: “Why would anyone here take this big, evidence free claim seriously? You need to understand that your very big, bold statement lacks credibility without details, evidence and proof AND an internet link to back this up. Give me a link to Chinese media with a photo with you standing with Xi Jinping, for example.” Why would I feel the need to prove anything to some one that seems to believe that the trace gas CO₂ that, instead of being the bases of all terrestrial life on Earth, is a devil in the sky that is going to cause the earth to heat in disastrous ways. A person such as that would say this: “Give me a link to Chinese media with a photo with you standing with Xi Jinping, for example”. This is closer than you have ever come to a country that you probably are hard pressed to find on a globe. https://photos.google.com/album/AF1QipNufvX2bVAoyi9fGWQ5goCF5_uKnV0JIuq-Cuad/photo/AF1QipNM4eT3c7yqwnyvJCHEPQjbkw9Wb2l-VVP9Ll8d

    https://photos.google.com/album/AF1QipPkUVg2kyFeXoOQqh5w4mei-R7mSBQYpw69LUof/photo/AF1QipODXgBxMSHO7Bytyo69ovz_TflvnpJf0bSBylAE

    Now to return to your obsession with electric cars that, at best, make up less than 1% of the cars on the roads of the world today.
    “The numbers are not promising at the moment. According to CityLab, out of 17,340,700 vehicles sold in 2017, only 200,000 were electric. That amounts to 1.15% of the total cars sold that year.”
    https://carsurance.net/blog/electric-cars-statistics/
    Then people like you have no plan to charge these electric cars of your dreams.

    Airplanes More Energy Efficient Than Cars
    In fact, unless you drive a car that gets 33.8 gallons per mile (or carry more than one passenger), new airplanes coming off the assembly line are more fuel-efficient, according to researchers at University of Michigan’s Transportation Research Institute.
     
    “Fuel economy must improve 57% (from the current average of 23.8 mpg) in order for light-duty vehicles to match the current energy efficiency of commercial airline flights,” notes Michael Sivak at University of Michigan. The option is for cars to carry at least 2.3 people, up from 1.38 today. That could happen given the trend toward car-sharing and ride-sharing.
     http://www.sustainablebusiness.com/index.cfm/go/news.display/id/25497

    What are your plans to fuel the numbers of airplanes in the skies?
    SHAPE OF THE MARKET Over the next 20 years, Boeing is forecasting a need for over 39,600 airplanes valued at more than $5.9 trillion. Aviation is becoming more diverse, with approximately 38 percent of all new airplanes being delivered to airlines based in the Asia region. An additional 40 percent will be delivered to airlines in Europe and North America, with the remaining 22 percent to be delivered to the Middle East, Latin America, the Commonwealth of Independent States, and Africa. Single-aisle airplanes command the largest share of new deliveries, with airlines needing over 28,100. These new airplanes will continue to stimulate growth for low-cost carriers and will provide required replacements for older, less-efficient airplanes. In addition, 9,100 new wide body airplanes will be delivered, which will allow airlines to serve new markets more efficiently than in the past.
    http://www.boeing.com/resources/boeingdotcom/commercial/about-our-market/assets/downloads/cmo_print_2016_final.pdf

  4. 54

    JDS 50: I have been to China on four separate occasions and know that they are not going to cut back on their coal fired power plants.

    BPL: Look again.

    https://bartonlevenson.com/ChinaAndIndia.html

  5. 55
    Killian says:

    In addition to hoping the next Climate Adaptation Summit will include regenerative design specialists such as myself, I also hope it is changed to be a Climate Mitigation Summit with adaptation relegated to a secondary role to deal with the changes we deem unavoidable even in the best-case scenario.

    However, Qualman said adaptation “just doesn’t make sense” unless we can find a way to “dramatically slash” the amount of warming Canada is on track to see this century.
    “The kind of warming that we are on track for, you know, destabilizes entire nations, kills millions and millions of people [and] obliterates cities,” he said.

    Qualman said in order for adaptation to work, you “have to be aiming at adapting to something reasonable.”

    “You can probably adapt to moderate climate change,” he said. “But we’re not facing moderate climate change. We’re facing extreme and devastating climate change.

    https://globalnews.ca/news/7610723/climate-change-canada-prairies/

  6. 56

    #50, JDS–

    I have been to China on four separate occasions and know that they are not going to cut back on their coal fired power plants.

    Had a good time hanging out with Xi and the Central Committee, did you?

    China has the highest installed capacity of coal power plants in the world.

    And the world’s largest electric consumption (in a virtual tie with the US), and the world’s largest wind fleet, the world’s largest EV fleet, and the world’s largest solar fleet. Your point?

    China has a lot to lose with climate change, already has a water crisis, wants to be more self-sufficient in energy, and has a lot to gain economically and in terms of internal politics by pollution abatement, all of which would make a cleaner energy economy a ‘win’. To believe that the nation is incapable of rational choice in such calculations is, IMO, an all-too-common form of tacit racism. But YMMV.

  7. 57
    J Doug Swallow says:

    It will be interesting to see if Gavin A. Schmidt allows his loyal followers to see this reply to Barton Paul Levenson. 
    #54 13 Feb 2021 at 7:16 AM Barton Paul Levenson says: “There is an easy way to keep up with this kind of information. It’s called “paying attention to the news.” It can be supplemented by a high-tech method I call “doing a Google search.”
    Don’t let the deniers snow you. They are counting on your not being willing to spend a few seconds searching Google or Bing. Don’t let them have the satisfaction. Call them on their BS whenever they trot it out. If enough of us do it, maybe it will shut them up, or at least force them to come up with new lies.” Barton Paul Levenson says this while offering up data from 2016.
    https://bartonlevenson.com/ChinaAndIndia.html

    If Barton Paul Levenson had been interested in the truth, he could have easily found it, like I did because the truth is what I seek.
    China has the highest installed capacity of coal power plants in the world. As of January 2021, it operated coal plants with a combined capacity of 1,042.9 gigawatts. This was more than four times the operational capacity of coal plants in the United States, which ranked second. China’s carbon dioxide emissions from coal combustion reached 7.2 billion metric tons in 2019 – roughly 70 percent of the country’s total emissions.
    https://www.statista.com/statistics/530569/installed-capacity-of-coal-power-plants-in-selected-countries/

    We were in India in March, 2018.
    India Energy Outlook 2021 February 2021
    India is the world’s third-largest energy consuming country, thanks to rising incomes and improving standards of living. Energy use has doubled since 2000, with 80% of demand still being met by coal, oil and solid biomass. 
    https://www.iea.org/reports/india-energy-outlook-2021
    Current List of Coal Power Plants
    http://globalenergyobservatory.org/list.php?db=PowerPlants&type=Coal

    Japan Races to Build New Coal-Burning Power Plants, Despite the Climate Risks
    Feb. 3, 2020
     https://www.nytimes.com/2020/02/03/climate/japan-coal-fukushima.html?fbclid=IwAR0AEr7DFwqU6MNNPVs7tkg_6lUlhxp8gwLTf4GMPitXNS35pSJYNN2VP0I

    Do folks like Barton Paul Levenson really care about those that have no electricity while they still have theirs in Pittsburgh?
    “Nearly 2 out of 10 people do not have access to electricity
    Of all countries, India has the largest population that does not have access to electricity — 304 million people. While 94 percent of Indians living in urban areas have electricity, only 67 percent in rural areas have power. North Korea, Burma and Cambodia have it even worse. About 70 percent of their total population does not have electricity.”
    https://www.washingtonpost.com/graphics/world/world-without-power/

  8. 58
    J Doug Swallow says:

    #56 13 Feb 2021 at 9:46 AM Kevin McKinney says: “And the world’s largest electric consumption (in a virtual tie with the US), and the world’s largest wind fleet, the world’s largest EV fleet, and the world’s largest solar fleet. Your point?”

    My point is: “China has the highest installed capacity of coal power plants in the world. As of January 2021, it operated coal plants with a combined capacity of 1,042.9 gigawatts. This was more than four times the operational capacity of coal plants in the United States, which ranked second. China’s carbon dioxide emissions from coal combustion reached 7.2 billion metric tons in 2019 – roughly 70 percent of the country’s total emissions.
    https://www.statista.com/statistics/530569/installed-capacity-of-coal-power-plants-in-selected-countries/

    Briefly, what is your point?

  9. 59

    JDS is now emailing me links to videos. If you get any of these, by all means do not click on them. I don’t know that they lead to malware, but I wouldn’t take any chances, especially not with something sent unsolicited.

  10. 60

    #58, JDS–

    Sigh. Repetition is not elucidation.

    Of course China has a ton of coal. But given that they have the world’s largest population and manufacturing base, that’s no surprise. It says nothing about present or future emissions trajectory, except that zeroing it out is a big job.

  11. 61
    J Doug Swallow says:

    #59 14 Feb 2021 at 7:34 AM Barton Paul Levenson says: “JDS is now emailing me links to videos. If you get any of these, by all means do not click on them”. Barton Paul Levenson must have been his teacher’s favorite in grade school for knowing that he would snitch on his fellow students. If anyone desires to send me any emails about what I maintain on this site that they ‘think’ is not true or accurate, by all means send it to
    John Swallow 

  12. 62

    #59, BPL–

    Yeah, he’s spamming my email, too. I’ve blocked him, after 3 emails this morning ‘illuminating’ me that, inter alia, CO2 is plant food, the planet is greening, and China oppresses Uighurs. (Also, some kind of minor obsession with feces.)

  13. 63
    jgnfld says:

    Re.: “snitch”???

    Good Lord. Grow up man.

  14. 64
    J Doug Swallow says:

    #62 15 Feb 2021 at 10:01 AM Kevin McKinney says: “‘illuminating’ me that, inter alia, CO2 is plant food, the planet is greening, and China oppresses Uighurs. (Also, some kind of minor obsession with feces.)” I do not recall that I sent you anything to do with feces; but have it your way. This is what I did send to you:
    http://co2coalition.org/2019/08/01/despite-what-democrats-said-at-their-debate-were-not-heading-toward-climate-apocalypse/
    https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2016/carbon-dioxide-fertilization-greening-earth
    http://evolution.berkeley.edu/evolibrary/article/0_0_0/mcelwain_03
    https://www.world-grain.com/articles/12665-igc-sees-grain-output-holding-steady
    https://www.academia.edu/15661616/THE_PAUSE_IN_GLOBAL_WARMING_A_NUMERICAL_APPROACH
    https://www.iceagenow.info/temperatures-have-been-falling-for-8000-years/
    https://weather.com/sports-recreation/ski/news/5-extreme-temperature-drops-20130118
    https://ui.adsabs.harvard.edu/abs/1992JVGR…51..171L/abstract
    “CO2 is odorless, colorless, and tasteless. Plants absorb CO2 and emit oxygen as a waste product. Humans and animals breathe oxygen and emit CO2 as a waste product. Carbon dioxide is a nutrient, not a pollutant, and all life– plants and animals alike– benefit from more of it. All life on earth is carbon-based and CO2 is an essential ingredient. When plant-growers want to stimulate plant growth, they introduce more carbon dioxide”.

    In Kevin McKinney’s case, feces has to be in the eye of the beholder.

  15. 65
    Piotr says:

    Re: Kevin McKinney (62) and BPL(59)

    Still he probably keeps his best arguments for Internet, where more people can view it – like his Intelligent Design in climatology – see my (113) in:
    https://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2021/01/unforced-variations-jan-2021/comment-page-3/

  16. 66
    William B Jackson says:

    #64 Water is dangerous when it is where it should not be in greater amounts than it should be in. CO2 likewise is good in proper proportions, plants grown with excessive amounts tend to be weak their food value reduced etc. Your denial of reality is noted!

  17. 67
    Sabina Sultana says:

    Can Ordinary People Seek Environmental Justice in Bangladesh? Analyzing Through the Lens of Legal, Policy, and Institutional Framework,

    https://papers.ssrn.com/sol3/papers.cfm?abstract_id=3773485

  18. 68
    Mr. Know It All says:

    “Climate adaptation involves many communities and disciplines (e.g. weather forecasting, climate services, regional climate modelling, “distillation“, disaster risk reduction) which I think aren’t well coordinated at the moment. One message from the summit was “Let’s work together” which I think implies a better coordination of the different disciplines and communities.”

    This “adaptation summit” reminds me of Thomas Sowell’s video “Varieties of Nothing”. When I compare K’s comment #5 above, and the Thomas Sowell video, it seems they agree very closely – I’ll bet K would agree:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qypnQkdg89g

    47 – BPL
    “BPL: But the price is dropping.”

    Po’ folk driving old ICE vehicles would be hurt the most by requiring EVs. They could not afford to buy one – they can barely afford gas for their ICE vehicle. To ensure equity for po’ folk we have to keep pumping gas. ;)

    47 – BPL
    “BPL: How did 62% become 67%?”

    Haven’t you heard? Getting the right answer? Dats racisssss…… :)

    https://mynorthwest.com/2604518/rantz-bill-and-melinda-gates-foundation-bankrolls-math-is-racist-lunacy/?

    Can you say: “The end of Western Civilization”? It’s a comin’. You voted for it, not me! Welcome to HELL comrades!